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  • Solar Powered iPhone


    Apple has filed a patent for a method of placing photovoltaic cells underneath an LCD touch screen, which would give them a great opportunity to maximize that 3.5 inch screen on the iPhone.

    According to the filing, the solar power info could be displayed either on the solar cells themselves, or on the device itself near the rest of the stats such as battery power, message alerts, etc.

    Solar powered phones could change that constant need to find a plug, USB cable, or extra battery, and instead give way to people all requesting window offices. Smoke breaks replaced by charging breaks. Sucks for those of you who live in depressingly grey cities like my hometown of Seattle.

    Forbes (thanks, arash)
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Solar Powered iPhone started by Kyle Matthews View original post
    Comments 49 Comments
    1. imode's Avatar
      imode -
      I think most of you are missing the significance of this. Any ambient light would be sufficient to provide a trickle charge to the battery. This could add up to a big energy savings over time. I don't think Apple intends people to only think of this in terms of charging a dead battery in strong sunlight.
    1. deadpoet's Avatar
      deadpoet -
      or Cleveland.
    1. DarkMirc's Avatar
      DarkMirc -
      For those of you who cant wait

      iPhone Solar Panel Charger - Green Tech at Vavolo.com

      Specification:

      * Power Output: 5.5V\160mA, 5V\120mA
      * Maximal Charging Capacity: 1350mAh
      * Output Voltage: 5.0V~5.4V
      * Power Current: 500mA~800mA
      * Charging Time: 180 minutes(Depends on cell phone)
      * Computer Or Adapter Charging Time: 5hours
      * Temperature Range: -4F to 131F, -20C to 55C
      * Dimension: 106 x 69 x 16 mm

      so if this device take 180 minute imagine how long it will take with just a few cells
    1. JAG2621's Avatar
      JAG2621 -
      Quote Originally Posted by GregTheWang View Post
      This. Is. Absolutely. Pointless.

      Seriously, how long do you have to put this out in the sun to power a battery eating monster of a jailbroken iPhone?

      Why is this poitless. It does not have to be in sunlight only artificial light will work but not as good. It will add extra cost to the phone but the being able to charge without hooking up to cable will be great. I guess you can not think clearly if you think it is pointless.
    1. Cookie_Meister's Avatar
      Cookie_Meister -
      Quote Originally Posted by DarkMirc View Post
      For those of you who cant wait

      iPhone Solar Panel Charger - Green Tech at Vavolo.com

      Specification:

      * Power Output: 5.5V160mA, 5V120mA
      * Maximal Charging Capacity: 1350mAh
      * Output Voltage: 5.0V~5.4V
      * Power Current: 500mA~800mA
      * Charging Time: 180 minutes(Depends on cell phone)
      * Computer Or Adapter Charging Time: 5hours
      * Temperature Range: -4F to 131F, -20C to 55C
      * Dimension: 106 x 69 x 16 mm

      so if this device take 180 minute imagine how long it will take with just a few cells
      It's all about the area (mostly), and with this new described method, you can put the solar cells behind the lcd screen. And that doesn't mean that the area will be smaller...
    1. JAG2621's Avatar
      JAG2621 -
      Quote Originally Posted by imode69 View Post
      I think most of you are missing the significance of this. Any ambient light would be sufficient to provide a trickle charge to the battery. This could add up to a big energy savings over time. I don't think Apple intends people to only think of this in terms of charging a dead battery in strong sunlight.
      Look he undrstands!
    1. spyder2005's Avatar
      spyder2005 -
      The Best Thing about this is that when you check under Apple's Instructions for Optimal Battery Treatment, you will find that it tells you not to expose it to heat/sunlight, cause it decreases the batteries "overall lifetime".

      So as of now, the more you'd charge it with solar power, the fewer energy it will hold in the future. Now thats Genius! Completely defeats the purpose. Btw, i just saw one of those "Solar chargers" for handheld devices for 10 bucks after Rebate lol. If you think this is cool, save yourself the wait and buy it now.
    1. iPhoneMadness's Avatar
      iPhoneMadness -
      Just a random thought: what if your iPhone is already charged to full capacity, and you take it out in the sun? Would it keep charging?

      Probably a stupid question but I'm not sure if it would work like a regular battery.
    1. kamy's Avatar
      kamy -
      Thats crazy...

      Its hard to believe soon a solar powered phone will be in mass production soon...